I was going through my hat collection a few weeks ago, while cleaning out part of one of our closets. Man, I forgot how many baseball hats I have. Next to my shoe fetish (I know I’m slightly girly), baseball hats are my next vice. I think I pulled out more than thirty ball caps relating to all sorts of baseball teams, and all of the major local sports franchises here in Chicago. The Blackhawks not included as I’m not sure they’re still in existence. Ha ha.

I’ve got two Cubs hats (1969, and the present home cap), three for the Louisville Bats (one for each visit I made), an Indians hat, a Schaumburg Flyers cap, some odds and ends minor league caps…..good grief. If I wore a different hat a day, you would not see the same hat in over a month. I’d also had permanent hat head, a very sexy look.

It got me to thinking on why I bought so many hats. As a kid, I fell in love with the Montreal Expos. I somehow decided that the hat looked really cool, and managed to get my parents to buy one for me. I’d spend hours in the front yard throwing the ball up in the air and catching “deep drives” to the outfield in that hat. I guess I figured Montreal was the most realistic way to make it to the Bigs. Not a bad thought process for a eight or nine year old. I think it was that hat that started the whole mess. How many kids in your neighborhood has an Expos’ hat? Exactly. I had something no one else did. Which is where this train ran itself right off the tracks. Most of my hats are for that exact reason. I must have a hat I’ve never seen anyone in.

 

 
  Chunichi Dragons outfielder Kosuke Fukudome declared for free agency Monday, opening the way for a possible move to the Major Leagues. (source) The Minnesota Twins plan to ask the Yankees for Robinson Cano in the event that they were to move Johan Santana to New York. My guess is that Phillip Hughes would also be part of the deal to help fill the pitching void. (source)  

In high school, I bought a Dolphins hat (which I still have), in Indianapolis of all places. It’s turquois with a Miami player actually riding on top of the dolphin. I can see wildlife people freaking out at that very visual. I’d never seen anything like it, and I never have since. I’ve actually been offered money for that hat one or two times. I could care less about the Dolphins….what was I thinking?

It was about six or seven years ago when I visited a friend in Louisville, where the hat frenzy caught on again. He took me to a Bats game, or River Bats as they were called that year, and I just had to have a hat. It’s really quite atrocious. It’s bright green with a purple bill, and this silly little purplish cartoony bat holding a baseball ball. Of course, they changed names the next year to the Bats, and the whole process started over again. Need new hat….must have new Bats hat. At least that one is pretty cool and mimics the Batman logo a bit. I won’t get into the reasons of why I decided to buy a jersey as well that year.

So here I sit, with a slightly silly collection of baseball hats. I typically wear the same two or three, while the others sit nicely packed in this box, but I take a gander at them occasionally. Once again wondering why I have all of them, and then I remember. Each of them has some sort of memory. Whether it was sitting in the third deck of Jacobs Field waiting for the rain delay with local family, or sitting in the bleachers at Slugger Stadium with a good friend, or that Sox hat I bought so I could go to a game on the southside without fear of being beaten up. It’s all in the memories, or as my wife likes to point out now, it all about covering up that thinning hair.

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Been blogging on VFTB since 2006. It's been a long silly run thus far. I still play baseball in the Chicago North Men's Senior Baseball League.